Volkswagen R32

A 250-horsepower, 3.2L V6, along with a full range of performance hardware to match the added power, is what gives the 2008 Volkswagen R32 its name and separates it from the Rabbit and GTI. The V6 is matched to the six-speed "DSG" automated manual transmission, which comes with steering-wheel-mounted paddle shifters. Power is delivered through a 4Motion all-wheel-drive system that normally sends 50 percent of power to the front and rear wheels but can send up to 75 percent to the rear wheels when needed.

Volkswagen says that the R32 can accelerate to 60 mph in 6.4 seconds.

The R32 is differentiated appearance-wise from the GTI on the basis of its lowered, more aggressive stance, unique aluminum grille, flashy 18-inch alloy wheels, a rear roof spoiler, and a flamboyant center-mounted dual exhaust arrangement with dual tips. Inside the R32 gets special metallic trim and a flat-bottomed steering wheel. Like the Rabbit and GTI hatchbacks, the rear seatback folds down to expand the cargo space when needed.

Standard features include xenon headlamps with washers, rain-sensing wipers, heated leather-trimmed sport bucket seats with lumbar adjustment, automatic climate control, a power sunroof, and a ten-speaker, MP3-compatible premium sound system with six-CD changer and Sirius satellite radio.

Options on the R32 are limited to a DVD-based navigation system, and all-weather tires instead of the standard summer performance ones.

As with the GTI, front side air bags, full-length curtain air bags, anti-locks, and electronic stability control are all standard.

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